Monthly Archives: December 2010

Divorcees shifting to the left

Oh How I love Hashkafa.com – usually I just roll my eyes and move on. But this is one of their posts this week and it does ring a bell.

I have noticed that many friends and acquaintances of mine (sadly there are many) who get divorced tend to shift to the left, halachically and hashkafically. Some of them are very gradual, some are immediate.

One friend started showing more hair, then removed her shaitel, then lowered her neckline, raised her hemline (mid-thigh length, for example), and now looks completely irreligious. She has not put on pants, yet, interestingly. She keeps shabbos, kosher, and stuff like that though.

Another friend took off her shaitel, put on pants, gave up her son to her husband without a fight, and is not religious AFAIK.

Another friend didn’t really move to the left, just *chilled* a bit and became slightly less stringent on certain halachos or chumros.

Is there something about a marriage gone wrong that pushes women to do this? Do other negative life changes cause this as well? Do widows act like this?

It seems like tznius is the first and major thing to go.

Has anyone noticed this? I find it really interesting.

I have found in my own personal experience that this is indeed the case. Many of the divorcees I know have had somewhat of a crisis of faith and have re examined where they want to be Jewishly. I know I did, I have written about it in the past. For me a lot of it was mourning – but I wonder what other women’s attitudes are towards religion after divorce, and why it seems to suffer afterwards.

Thoughts?

No 2010 Wrap Up Post

I know that in the past I have written an annual wrap up post, but this year I decided not to. This was an awesome year – one in which our family was reunited to live under one roof after a hard time of uncertainty and worry. Instead of looking back, I am going to look forward to the future, to being together with the KoD, to raising our children to fulfill their potentials, to celebrating many milestones in the future.

Here’s to a wonderful 2011 – Cheers!!

Tea for Two

(Florence, this is for you)

I spent part of this afternoon at the local kosher grocery with Florence, a good friend. We had some time left over after shopping and she invited me to join her for a cup of tea – a nod to my British roots. I informed my lovely friend that I don’t drink tea out of the house.

I explained that I am very particular about my tea – in fact, so particular, that I only drink tea that has been purchased in the UK and brought to me here. That is the only way I can ensure that my tea is strong enough and tastes the way I am used to it tasting.

Currently I am working my way through a huge box of PG Tips that my friend D brought me back last time he was in Old Blighty.

Nothing, absolutely NOTHING here in the States, or in Canada even comes close to making the same delicious brew. I have my standards, and I need my British Tea with a couple of digestive biscuits on the side.

So, sorry Florence, that I didn’t take you up on your offer, it wasn’t personal to you. It’s not you, it’s me and my tea peculiarities!!

Convicted of Rape

Moshe Katzav, Israel’s former President, was found guilty of rape today in an Israeli court. What I fail to understand, and perhaps someone can enlighten me, is how they convicted him and did not immediately remand him into custody until sentencing.

He committed and was found guilty of more than one heinous act, yet he got to go home like he did nothing wrong. Most men in most civilized countries would be remanded into custody until sentenced for these terrible crimes. Because he was the President, he gets to go free? There was no mention of bond, house arrest, nothing of the sort. What kind of sentence can we expect – a slap on the wrist?? Minimum sentence for rape in Israel is 4 years. Let’s see what the judge gives him…

Can someone please explain this?

Grumpaliciousness

Seriously, is there something that is in their DNA that makes (pre) teens so darn crabby in the morning?? What the heck do they have to be cranky about? They get food and shelter, clean clothes and a warm bed, love and affection, all their needs are met. So, they have to get out of bed before the sun has risen – I do too! I am up earlier than them, to set up the coffee and inhale a massive dose of snarkitol so that I can deal with them and you don’t hear me complaining (OK maybe you do, but that is my right as the mama bear).

Oh it is so darn tooting hard to be a young ‘un these days….Puhleeze….

What would you have done?

So there was a huge snow storm here this week. I got this email today:

….I heard that women who needed to go to the mikveh Sunday night [during the storm] called up Hatzolah and told them they needed to “go to work at the mikveh” (mikveh lady).  So one of the Hatzolah guys said “Hey, there are like THIRTY mikveh ladies working tonight!!”

I dunno – the wind was howling and there was zero visibility – I probably would have waited till Monday night to immerse. I don’t think it was worth calling Hatzolah OR putting your life in such danger. And what is with the lying? I understand they wanted to be modest and not say they had to immerse that night, but please…

What do you think?

Tales from the Gym – Episode One

Before I left the house to go to the gym I updated my FB and Twitter saying that in the next few days I reserve the right to complain about my muscles aching. We finished our workout 45 minutes ago and I am already kvetching!

The KoD has been a member of this gym for donkey’s years, but since our marriage and the commuting between NY and Montreal and work schedules and a whole host of other excuses, the gym kind of fell by the wayside. I had always wanted to go with him to the gym – it took two years, but darnit, we got there, and we will continue to go to the gym together for as long as possible, schedules permitting.

I love the fact that we get money back from our insurance company for going to the gym. We worked out that it practically pays for the membership! With our insurance if you go to the gym 50 times in 6 months they send you a nice amount of money back. If cost is what is holding you back from joining a gym – check your health insurance policy. You may be able to swing it!

The KoD insisted that I turn off my cell phone and deposit it in the locker. This was time to work on ME, time for no one to bother me. I resisted at first, but he was right. There was one woman yammering away on her cell phone and it was interrupting her workout.

Luckily being the gym expert that he is the KoD was able to show me lots of stuff. We started out on the elliptical – 15 minutes. I was very conscious of not pushing myself. I must start off this exercise thing gently otherwise I will suffer the consequences. While I was huffing and puffing and mopping my brow the KoD was ellipticalling away like he’s been doing it all day every day for the last seventeen years. Show off!!

Then we walked a couple of laps around the track, and it was off to the weights. We did a few sets on different machines – the weight resistance on mine was around the 20-30lb range, and his was way over 100… The KoD showed me how to correctly hold my posture for each different machine, and when to breathe in and out. Silly me, at one point I complained that the weight resistance was too easy – he told me to let it go slower. Yowch!! Feel. The. Burn!!

Then it was over to the bicep curls. I used weights of 5lb, he used a lot heavier. I looked in the mirror and was totally yukked out by the sight of my stick-like arms. I need to work on the biceps and triceps so that I can have some definition. Being an ectomorph is no fun – I want shape, darn it!! He then did some shrugs with 60lb weights. That looked totally painful. I didn’t do any as I have absolutely no interest in thickening my neck.

At one point in this work out the KoD turned to me and asked “so did I lose weight yet?” – we had a good old chuckle. I asked him if my stomach had any definition since my workout – desperate for this to work quickly I guess!!

We plan to go together as often as possible – it helps to have a workout buddy. There were other people there, working out in various types of attire. There is a sign specifying that you need to wear proper work out clothes – but not everyone sticks to that. I did.

Off to take a mega dose of Advil and a looooong hot shower… Stay tuned. I am sure this gymming will give me plenty of blog fodder.

Thank you KoD for showing me the ropes!!

Making grocery shopping more fun!

Any busy mom will tell you that grocery shopping takes up a lot of time and patience and money. So anything that will make our time spent in the grocery store more enjoyable is something that I want to know about.

Since I have moved down I have my whole shopping route planned out – and it generally includes the local Kosher grocery store, Costco, and up until now, Shop Rite.

(Disclaimer: I have not been paid or compensated in any way shape or form to write this article. This is just me writing about a great experience.)

A huge new Stop N Shop store opened up recently not too far from Shop Rite and the other day the KoD and I decided to try it out.  I have to tell you, I have been there 3 times in the past 2 weeks and am hooked. The shopping experience there is so much better than anywhere else.

Handy Dandy Scanner Thingy

Firstly, with a Stop N Shop member card you can scan your own stuff as you go along. You take something off the shelf, scan the bar code, put it in your shopping bag and you are done with it. If you do this for every item, then you don’t have to stand in line for 20 minutes waiting for the cashier to ring up your groceries. This handy dandy scanner gives you a running total – so if you are over budget you can adjust accordingly before you have to pay. When you are done, you just scan your card and the bar code at the check out, and you pay and that is it. Smooth. Simple. Painless. (Although I do wonder how they stop petty pilferage). I want to work out how much time self scanning as you shop saves you, but even if it doesn’t save you much time, I like the fact that it eliminates the need to stand in line to pay and bag your groceries. Also, the kids will love being the appointed scannerer.

Secondly – when we joined (free membership), the awesome store manager came over, shook hands with the KoD and presented us with a $10 gift card. I am sure that such gifts are built into the operating budget – but it was a wonderful gesture and one that made us want to go back just for the goodwill feeling alone. The staff there are super friendly and helpful.

Thirdly – their bakery is KOSHER! Most of the stuff is dairy though, which is a bummer, but it is a relief to be able to buy kosher baked goods in a regular store.

Their prices are comparable to Shop Rite and other grocery chains. One thing though, that really tickled me pink the other day was this. We buy milk, a lot of milk. After purchasing a few gallons of milk I got a coupon for a free gallon of milk (and no useless coupons for stuff I never buy). That’s a $2.99 saving right there. Not only that – they have a program just for the milk. So the more milk I buy the more I save on future milk purchases! We go through a lot of milk – this saving will add up. They also have a program to save money on gas depending on how much money you spend on groceries – but we are still not clear on how that works. I think we worked out that Stop N Shop gas was 5 cents per gallon more expensive than Costco – but I am not 100% sure.

So long Shop Rite with your long lines and cashiers with attitude. I am pledging allegiance to the Stop N Shop.

Wednesday’s Wacky Signs

Swimming Gear

So riddle me this. I checked out the local gym today, and the pool had women-only hours while I was there. I popped my head through the door to take a quick peek at what the pool looked like, and saw some women swimming. I saw religious women in robes and turbans IN the pool alongside those in swimsuits. This was a time for only women. There were NO MEN around. Is there an idea somewhere that even amongst women we have to cover everything?

When I use the pool I plan on wearing my regular swimming costume – no large tee shirt to cover me. I am not going there to parade around – I am going there to work out. Surely it is not safe to wear a robe IN the pool?

(Nor do I feel it is safe for the guys to be running on the treadmills, stair-masters or elipticals with their tzitzit flying, but that’s a rant for another day).